How Are You?

(Author’s Note: I am late in getting this inaugural Wellness category post published but life, death, job search and a giraffe named April interrupted my plans. This week there will be posts about how I am doing in each area of my life. Hopefully my posts will encourage you to work on the areas of your life. Or after you find out about my life, maybe you will gain a new appreciation for your life. This series will end on March 29th.) 

Just Trying To Be Nice? 

One of life’s most over used and insincere greetings is

“How are you?”

People ask that question but really do not want to know the answer. All they want to hear is “fine.” They usually are asking the question just to be nice.

8 Key Areas Of Life

Keys

However, today we need to get serious about the question “How are you?”

How is your physical health? Physical health is one of the 8 key areas of life according to J.T. O’Donnell

Here is the full list:

  • Mental Self
  • Physical Self
  • Finances
  • Family, Friends & Children
  • Career
  • Hobbies/Recreation
  • Physical Environment/Surroundings
  • Romance/Significant Other

I put them in the order of importance for me as of today. The bottom six fluctuate but Mental and Physical self are always the top two.

Physical Self

Darren Rowse spoke about his physical self in episode #38 of his ProBlogger Podcast. He talks about changes he made and how they impacted his life and blog.

What he has to say applies to everyone and not to just us bloggers. I’ve made a change as a result (there are times my laptop sits on an empty milk crate, so I have to stand).

Must Do This

The condition of your physical self becomes more important after losing a spouse. You need to see your doctor as soon as possible so you have a starting point from which to improve or maintain depending upon your results. When making your appointment inform them your spouse passed away, odds are they will get you in quickly.

One Of The Best Uses Of Your Time

Aside from reading  your Bible and doing a daily devotion, the best use of your time today is to listen to Episode 38 of Problogger Podcast. 

Once  you are done ask yourself

 

“How Am I – Really?” 

 

Bio: Michele Kearns is the founder and HUG© (Hope Unites Globally) Award-Winner of JoyReturns. She shares her widowhood adventures hoping to encourage widows to move through grief and rebuild their lives by seizing new opportunities. A graduate of Kent State University with a Bachelor’s degree in communications, she’s used those skills while working as a call center team leader, facilitating a grief support group and helping small businesses with various writing and administrative assignments. Michele is a bookworm, lover of golden retrievers and an amateur photographer. You can view her photographs at OgleOhio.com because one blog is not enough

 

 

 

Is Valentine’s Day Cheesy?

 

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A lot of people either don’t or reluctantly celebrate Valentine’s Day because to them it is a cheesy made up Hallmark day. It’s just another excuse for companies to get their grubby hands on your hard earned money.

Do I think Valentine’s Day is cheesy? No.

 

Life get’s busy and while we should celebrate Valentine’s Day every day, we don’t. So once a year we get a reminder to express love to our family and friends. Cherish Valentine’s Day because next year, some of the people you love may not be here.

You will wish they were here even on a day you consider cheesy.

Happy Valentine’s Day. 

Love Always, 

thinbutterfly

 

 

 

Fear Fighting by Kelly Balarie – A Review

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One of my highlights in 2016 was being chosen for the launch team for Kelly Balarie’s book Fear Fighting, awakening courage to OVERCOME your fears.  The book released today.

Kelly shares personal stories and actionable tips for over coming various fears-inducers including:

  • The Devil
  • Control
  • People Pleasing
  • Worrying
  • Comparison and Competition
  • Waiting While Trembling
  • Rejection and Opposition
  • The Past

which all happen to be fears widows deal with at some point in time.

Not a Rosy Story

It was the chapter on comparison and competition that sucker punched me.  Kelly writes about comparing herself to Rosie and the story was anything but rosy.

I too compare myself to others, wanting what they have so I can be like them and fit in. Whether it was fitting in with the in-crowd in school or fitting in with society after being widowed. Widows do not fit in with society, we are chewed up and spit out on the outside of the palace gates. We are the true deplorables. (but that is a subject for another post.)

Grief and Comparison

I found myself even doing it while grieving. Everyone else got back to normal or in some cases, their lives took off in unexpected and very pleasing circumstances. Me – I was grieving. The only moving I did was to the unemployment line a year after Joe’s passing.

There is no room for comparison while you are grieving. Do not compare yourself to another widow, she make look like she has it altogether but you do not know what goes on behind closed doors.

Once you do discover the details of another widow’s grief, you will most likely decide you are blessed to be experiencing the grief hand you were dealt.

Grief and Competition

Getting through grief is NOT a competition. There is no race to see who can come out of grief the soonest, who has the easiest grief, or who comes out of it looking the most beautiful.

There was not another woman who was widowed at the same time as me, so I did not compete with anyone to see who could finish grieving first or who looked better while grieving. (fyi – you are finished grieving when you walk through the gates of heaven. Revelation 21:4)

Behold His Radiance

In the chapter Kelly also writes:

What we see as our hindrance, God sees as admittance to behold His radiance.

pg 117

Grief is your hindrance, but you will see God in all his radiant glory through the help and support friends and family provide.

And once you see His radiance, it is up to you to emit God’s radiance to others. You do not do emit radiance by comparison and competition – you do that by serving others, even while you are grieving. 

Something To Chew On

Kelly closes each chapter with a section titled Something to Chew On. These are additional thoughts for you to meditate on. My favorite from the Comparison and Competition chapter is:

“Remind me of all the bad, and I will say, “The downpours are just precursors to rainbows.”

pg 121

Group Bible Study

Included in the book is a 12-week group Bible study, or you can do it alone. I am starting the Bible study this week. It will be a great way to kick off 2017.

Final Thoughts

I’ve always said grief is life’s greatest self-improvement course. Fear Fighting is an excellent book to read and  learn how to sucker-punch any fears that arise, whether or not you are grieving.

In Excellent Company

This book is in my stack of favorite books by author’s such as Ann Voskamp, J.T. O’Donnell, Mark Batterson, and Heather Burch. As  you can see it is also one where I used a lot of sticky notes. There are also a lot of highlights and notes in the margins.

book

Well done Kelly, well done good and faithful servant! 

Matthew 25:21

Disclaimer: I am part of the Fear Fighting book launch team and received a free copy in exchange for my honest review. The links provided are not affiliate links and I receive no compensation when  you buy  Kelly’s book.

(Special Thank You to the Brunswick Library and the Adult Reference staff for the use of their fireplace and resources. The library served as my office for the past 4 months.)

 

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